As a public speaking expert, I am often asked for advice from people who struggle with public speaking. In this article, I’m going to give you my top 3 tips for combating your fear of public speaking so you can produce a great presentation.
Firstly, I want you to know you’re not alone. 3 out of 4 people have a fear of public speaking. These fears can be attributed to many causes. From self-sabotage, developed from an early age. to bad experiences in the past.
But it doesn’t have to be this way.
By taking the time to practice and develop your public speaking skills you can and will get over your fear of public speaking. It will take time but it will become easier. Until you get to a point where you may even learn to enjoy it. Although, all people are different, everyone will overcome their fear at a different pace. But the 3 tips below are a great place to start.
The 3 P’s to Overcome the Fear of Public Speaking
Planning, preparation and practice are key elements for success when public speaking. Standing in front of others and feeling ill-prepared can be a major cause of fear. This is often what leads people to struggle.
The best talks don’t just happen by accident. They are the result of the speaker completing the 3 P’s of public speaking. Being confident in the knowledge that they know their subject, leaving them free to concentrate on delivering a great performance without worry.
Public Speaking Planning
Firstly, consider how long you have to prepare and practice for your presentation. You wouldn’t want to spend 3 weeks writing your script and then give yourself 3 days to learn and practice it. You need adequate time to research your topic and the audience. So you can determine exactly what you’re going to speak about.
Think about stories which may relate to your topic. Some fascinating facts and ice breakers. But most importantly, this is where you finalise all the key ideas which you plan to discuss. So you know exactly what you want your audience to get from your presentation and how you plan to deliver.
Public Speaking Preparation
This is where it all comes together and a list of facts isn’t going to cut it. You need to create a structure which takes your listener on a journey. Make sure it is written in a way which makes it easy for you to deliver. Keep it simple, avoiding big words which you may struggle with on the day, or words which your audience may fail to understand.
Give yourself a solid opening. Whether it’s a shocking fact, something funny or a statement to which your audience will relate. This will make it easier to captivate them as you begin to tell a great story. Although not compulsory, talking about personal situations allows for real passion and emotion. It can make your story more relatable.
Finish with a strong message, wrapping up the key elements which you have covered and of course the key message you want them to go away with. Don’t forget to remind them about who you are and where they can find you, before closing the show.
Public Speaking Practice
Practice with friends, family, alone or in front of a mirror. It is a very important element for confidence in your delivery. Be sure to go through your entire talk many times. A great way to evaluate your presentation is to record a video of yourself performing it and then watch it back. Write down how you felt after each attempt. Taking note of what went well, what didn’t, where you stumble and the parts you need to improve.
You will begin to remember the small details and get to know your speech. You’ll identify weak points and gradually make them stronger. Over time, you’ll get to know your speech inside and out. This, in turn, will cause your anxiety and fears to begin to go away.
You’ll never likely be totally free of your nerves, which is a good thing. The adrenaline you will generate at the time will help to keep you sharp. But because you have practised and worked on your talk, you will be much more confident in your delivery.
Many people struggle with a fear of public speaking. But by taking the time to plan, prepare and practice you will get better. Give yourself enough time, making sure you have identified all the elements you wish to cover. Have a look at my video on my YouTube Channel as well – https://www.youtube.com/c/SonalDave68/
Give your presentation a solid structure. Taking the audience on a well thought out journey. Covering everything you decided in your plan. Then practice until it’s perfect. By completing the 3 P’s, you will be confident that you have a great presentation which you can deliver.
If you would like further guidance then contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org